Spanberger Helps Reintroduce Bipartisan Bill to Include Head Start Jobs in Work-Study Programs, Give College Students Early Childhood Education Experience

The Bipartisan Legislation Would Allow Head Start Programs to Employ Work-Study-Eligible College Students in Part-Time Jobs

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger today reintroduced bipartisan legislation to allow Head Start programs to receive Federal Work-Study dollars, bring additional in-classroom support to Head Start programs, and provide opportunities for college students to gain early childhood education experience.

Currently, Work Study recipients are unable to use their designation to work in Head Start centers. The Head Start For Our Future Act would amend the Higher Education Act of 1965 to make jobs in early childhood education — including Head Start positions — eligible as community service under the Federal Work-Study program.

“Thousands of students across the Commonwealth of Virginia hold work-study jobs every year to gain on-the-job experience and earn extra income. However, Head Start centers are currently prohibited from hiring these work-study students — taking valuable experience away from students preparing for careers in early childhood education and preventing Head Start classrooms from staffing up,” said Spanberger. “By allowing Head Start programs to qualify for Federal Work Study funding, our bipartisan bill makes a commonsense fix to this problem. I’m proud to join my colleagues Congressman Castro, Congressman Cole, and Congressman Moolenaar in supporting two worthy causes: training the next generation of early childhood education teachers and providing more staffing for this program with a demonstrated record of improving outcomes for children and families across Virginia.”

Spanberger reintroduced the Head Start for Our Future Act alongside U.S. Representatives Joaquin Castro (D-TX-20), Tom Cole (R-OK-04), and John Moolenaar (R-MI-02).

BACKGROUND

Since arriving in the U.S. House, Spanberger has worked to strengthen support for Head Start programs in Virginia and across the country. The Congresswoman received the “2020 Head Start Pledge Award” from the National Head Start Association for demonstrating her commitment to fulfilling the Head Start pledge to serve Virginia children and families.

Click here to read the full bill text.

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